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‘Darkest Minds’: Jennifer Yuh Nelson of ‘Kung Fu Panda’ to Make Live-Action Directorial Debut with YA Adaptation

All three novels were best-sellers.

After directing the last two “Kung Fu Panda” movies, Jennifer Yuh Nelson is set to make her live-action debut with “Darkest Minds.” Fox is developing the project, which is based on Alexandra Bracken’s trilogy of young-adult novels. The series centers around a telekinetic 16 year old in a postapocalyptic America ravaged by a pandemic known as Idiopathic Adolescent Acute Neurodegeneration (IAAN).

READ MORE: Immersed in Movies: How DreamWorks Made Two Versions of ‘Kung Fu Panda 3’

With “Kung Fu Panda 2,” Yuh Nelson became the first woman to direct an animated feature for a major studio without a co-director. Prior to that she had worked on “Dark City,” “Madagascar” and the first “Kung Fu Panda.” In the series, some survivors of IAAN have developed superpowers and been consigned to internment camps by the government.

READ MORE: Immersed in Movies: Jennifer Yuh Nelson Lifts Kung Fu Panda 2

The first book was published in 2012; all three — “The Darkest Minds,” “Never Fade” and “In the Afterlight” — were best-sellers. No other information on the adaptation has been announced yet, but Fox is likely hoping for a franchise on the level of “The Hunger Games.”

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